Prepared sperm is stored in an incubator ready for insemination in a lab. File picture: Wong Maye-E/AP
Cape Town - A South African sperm supplier is in hot water after a leading IVF clinic claimed it used the supplier’s useless sperm on dozens of patients.

The MailOnline reported that the Australian fertility clinic Genea had admitted to using substandard sperm as part of a treatment that gave women little chance of ever falling pregnant.

But the clinic put the blame squarely at the door of Donor Gametes South Africa.

Sydney woman Amy Jones failed to fall pregnant after she paid AU$2500 (R24 635) for the treatment and AU$5000 for vials of sperm from Donor Gametes. She underwent intrauterine insemination (IUI) this year at Genea, which informed her the sperm was to blame as it had not been “fit for purpose”.

The company claimed “quality control” was to blame.

“They told me I could never have fallen pregnant with this sperm and this procedure,” she told the Sydney Morning Herald.

According the Genea, the number of moving sperm was lower than recommended. It was only suitable for intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), a more expensive technique that involves injecting a single sperm into each egg.

“It’s not just the money. It’s the five months it took to get to the IUI procedure, the wait-list to access the donor website, waiting for the sperm to arrive and two weeks of thinking ‘Oh God, I could be pregnant’ when it was literally impossible.”

Jones managed to secure a refund and will now undergo the more invasive IVF treatment.

Genea claimed the supplier, Donor Gametes South Africa, was responsible for the error. A spokesperson said there was a “quality control issue’ and the sperm samples were not as advertised. They said they recognised the problem quickly and immediately informed patients. Their relationship has now been suspended.

According to Mailonline, the company has a disclaimer which read: “Genea does not vouch for nor provide a guarantee or promise as to the quality or effectiveness of sperm ordered from DGSA (Donor Gametes).”

Weekend Argus